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The Rise Of Malaysia’s Boutique Agencies

The Rise Of Malaysia’s Boutique Agencies

Turns out, size does matter… sometimes.

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Local brand agency Sambal Lab was just recognised as the Boutique Agency of the Year (Gold) at the recent advertising + marketing’s Agency of the Year (AOTY) Awards ceremony. 

The boutique agency took home a total of 10 medals, including three MARKies Golds for Most Creative Consumer Event, Most Effective Use – Apps / Mobile, and Most Effective Use – Experiential. 

Speaking on the night’s win, Founder and Chief of Sambal Lab Balreet Gill attributed the agency’s success to the fact that it’s motivated by growth and strategically driven. 

What is a “boutique agency”?

Boutique agencies refer to small agencies, usually operated by highly-qualified specialists, which offer customised digital, media, and creative services. 

Their size is their advantage, as it allows for more flexibility in the working and creative process. Most importantly, brands and companies will be able to have direct access to the people working on their projects. 

This sentiment is echoed by Gill, who mentioned that their strong relationship with clients is developed through their fuss-free and zero redtapes work style. 

Our resolute relationships cultivated with clients over the years stem from what we bring to the table – no fluff, no excuses and absolutely no bureaucracy.

Founder & Chief of Sambal Lab Balreet Gill

More and more big brands are starting to engage boutique agencies

While boutique agencies are a norm overseas, they have just started to gain traction in Malaysia recently. This is observed as more big brands are opting to engage boutique agencies to manage their media campaigns as well as their digital communication channels. 

Clients are waking up to the reality that big agencies don’t always guarantee big results; a cadre of tightly knit and capable individuals working together is all you need to deliver a lethal strike.

Partner of Sambal Lab Jodh Dheensay

It’s important to note that this doesn’t mean that multinational network agencies do not deliver effective campaigns and results. Quality work has been continuously churned out by agencies – big and small – and each has their own competitive edge. At the end of the day, it comes down to what the brand wants to achieve, and what resources it has to achieve it.

Nevertheless, it’s encouraging to see small and medium-sized enterprises thrive in Malaysia! Congratulations to all the AOTY winners!


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